Restaurants

  • This cosy and retro restaurant has plenty of community charm. Come for a casual catch-up or romantic dinner date over cocktails, stay for the consistently good – nay, great – gnocchi and Italian mains.

  • Just 20 diners a night are admitted to this inimitable Indian restaurant, where owner-chef Helly Raichura cooks vibrant banquets faithful to regional Indian cuisines using top-quality local produce and native ingredients.

  • Henry Sugar is the kind of wine bar every neighbourhood should have. It’s intimate yet communal; sophisticated yet relaxed. The mix of contemporary Australian fare, sharp cocktails and easy-drinking natural wines are a sure-fire bet your first time here won’t be the last.

  • Lucky’s Pizzeria in North Carlton is a sweet little pizza joint that locals love.

  • La Luna bistro is a meaty affair and much-loved local favourite.

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Cafes

  • This panini spot takes cues from Italian paninotecas and old-world Mediterranean delis. Build your own panini or choose from classic combos such as mortadella and crushed pistachio, or prosciutto, pesto and fior di latte.

  • This Rathdowne Village cafe has an old soul: with a relaxed, unpretentious feel reminiscent of the pre-Instagram era. It's got a pared-back, produce-driven menu that looks different day to day (but the standout gravlax and signature riff on eggs Florentine aren't going anywhere).

  • A welcome oasis for coffee lovers in North Carlton.

  • A consistent neighbourhood favourite.

Bars

  • Gerald Diffey and Mario Di Ienno’s storied neighbourhood bar brims with nostalgia. Vintage books, yesteryear’s wine bottles and a glimmering disco ball decorate the space – but the thing you’ll notice most is warm, old-school hospitality. The menus turn on a dime, so you’ll always have reasons to keep coming back.

  • One of the city’s original craft beer destinations, this sprawling boozer has 22 taps of indie brews from Victoria and beyond. We’d expect nothing less from a pub owned by the founder of Feral Brewing. The excellent beer garden is an ideal base of operations to work your way through the tap list.

Shops